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[captioning made possible by nbc universal] >> this is "the chris matthews show." >> ask not what your country can do for you. >> tear down this wall. >> i can hear you. >> the time for change has come! chris: for all the world to see, as we head on to 2012, what were the show-stopping moments of twelve? -- 2011? what were president obama's best moves and what moves changed everything? now give it to us cold. of all the nasty com -- nominees for cad this year which was the worst? and who pulled off the greatest comeback of this year? hi, i'm chris matthews.
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welcome to this year's awards show, always a highlight of the season the with us today, "time" magazine's richard stengle, katty kay, kathleen parker and chuck todd. we start with president obama. what was his best move of 2011? getting osama bin laden or toppling qaddafi? keeping the promise to end the war in iraq? or on a more 450u78 -- human level, his very moving speesm after gabby giffords was shot? >> it's easy to spay qaddafi but i'm going bin laden. it was a risk. and a policy that is going to define what future presidents do -- chris: lead from behind? >> no. in a bigger way it was as big a gamble and maybe bigger than --
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>> and hillary clinton and susan rice -- >> no doubt, the woman of the foreign policy team had a lot to do with it but this is also about when the united states signs a pact to be an ally with a country like france and great britain and we always ask them to be with america when they go there, this was a case when we needed to stand with them. chris: very interesting. you had an expression there, i don't know if it was dismay or what it was.s. >> it was surprise. because the libyar conflict lasted so much longer than people expected, because it tied up american spors -- forces and money at a time when the country was just not willing to enter another conflict and i think a lot of people were asking why, i would go with osama bin laden. i think this is actually my hardest one of all.
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it's a tossup between osama bin laden and iraq but it was a good news day for the president. it inoculates him against any criticism that he is in any way soft on terrorism. >> first of all i think, i love that chuck gave credit to the women on the team. chris: he's very smart! >> no, it is true, they did -- >> i'm not turning the floor over here, by the way. i do have something to say. i agree with both of you. and it is a hard question because so many of these are important. but the three foreign policy ones are really part of this obama way of doing things and i think, i don't know, osama bin laden is an easy choice but it's important. chris: the chicago way? >> no, the cool and lacking in chest-beating way. we didn't invade another muslim country when we dealt with
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libya. and people say oh, she's an obama lover, whatever, but he did it well. it was a net shot. >> swish. chris: number one achievement for the president? >> easy to say osama bin laden, and one of the things about it, we sort of fetishize risks -- >> easy but wrong -- easy but wrong? he took a risk. it was a calculated risk but a smart decision. to me it is the withdrawal from iraq. that was a colossal campaign promise and not since world war ii have we had to bring so many people home in such a short amount of time, and i think that's the thing that will resonate this year. chris: and it's so hard to win a -- end a war because you always have the doubters who say if we'd just stayed four more years -- >> you picked a good category.
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chris: next category. the republicans, what was the biggest turning point in this year in their nomibation for president? -- nomination for president? was it rick perry's devastating oops? >> i would do away with the education, the, uh -- commerce? let's see. the third one i can't mple sorry. oops. -- i can't. sorry. chris: was it new jersey governor chris christy's decision to duct race altogether? had was it the brain freeze on libya that began cain's downfall? >> i do not agree with the way he handled it for the following reason. no. that's a different one. chris: there's a man literally prepared but not alert. >> he was looking at his notes. chris: or was it the mild-mannered mitt romney going on the attack now that he faces
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a tough race with newt gingrich? >> i feel so sorry for rick perry every time i see that. he did go completely blank. oops. it was certainly the turning point for him and it led to the larger perception people have that the republicans are not well versed in the issues they have to address. >> i'm going with newt. if he stays in the race that's going to be the more defining point of the race. herman cain was at some point going to burn out. it will drag out campaign and potentially damage both of them and play to the white house's advantage. >> it's the old joke, what's the secret of comedy? timing. the secret of politics is timing and newt gingrich's timing is impeccable and that has turned the race. the fact that mitt has to now
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attack him, all the planning has gone asunder. chris: timing. i love that. nixon always believed that. you had to crest at a tern -- certain time. he's cresting in december when all the elections are in the new year. >> i guess i'm going with perry simply because he was the only guy in the race that had the organization, the heft, the natural ability to tap into the anti-washington sentiment that eventually herman cain -- without perry bombing we wouldn't with have -- have had herman cain and so on the we wouldn't have the race we have today. but the christy thing, i guess we be never really thought -- you could make the same argument. chris: he could have been another perry. next up, digital rising. that -- this was an incredible year for the impact of the digital avenlgt what was the
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biggest? the protesters massing in kyra, syria, russia? richard engel was in kyra -- cairo. >> when they thought that the cell phone messages weren't safe, they would switch to twitter. then when the twitter messages they thought were being compromised, they would switch to facebook the chris: great reporting there. or was it apple become the -- becoming the world's biggest company? and the sfeeve jobs story in or more and more people paying to get newspapers online rather than in their driveways? or was it emple mail -- email taking over the post office? rick? >> last month, chris, i went to egypt and tunisia and to this tiny little town outside tunis where a man set himself on
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fire. this place is in the back of the back of beyond. you don't think anything could start there, much less a world historical movement. you know how it happened? somebody took a cell phone video of the protest after he i am 0 lated himself and -- imolated himself and that was sent all through the middle east. an amazing phenomenon. chris: social networking? >> social network s -- networking was an aid to something that was simmering and boiling over but without it, it probably wouldn't have happened. >> stern and zuckerberg have to be the biggest heroes of the middle east spring because they enabled the reporting. we're still getting day after date cell phone pictures people are managing to get out of president country. we would have no idea what was happening in syria if it wasn't for that.
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chris: such a convergence, steve jobs passing away, and all that, it was like this year was the year it all popped. next award, i love this one every year. the chutzpah award prize. the nominees, donald trump demanding the president's birth certificate. >> why doesn't he show his birth certificate? it's outrageous. chris simon i'm sorry. it is outrageous the or was it nulet newt's in -- newt gingrich's incredible explanation for his affairs? >> times in my life partially driven by how passionately i cared for this country and i worked far too hard and self-destructed. chris: and charlie sheen in >> i picked a fight with a war locke. tiger blod and add on is d.n.a. wow, winning! chris: or maybe it wasn't a man but a machine the a computer
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called watson went on "jeopardy" and beat the two best contestants of all time >> over to ken jennings now. who is stoker? i for one welcome our new computer on board! chris: you know what that was? the computer had done so well in raising money up to the point of the final jeopardy that that poor guy, genius as he was, didn't have enough money at that point to beat the machine. the machine had already beaten him. >> and i'm fementd -- tempted to say donald trump whatever he did this year wins the chutzpah prize of the year. chris: doesn't he get it january 1 of every year? >> just by being there. but getting into the race, demanding the birth certificate -- it wasn't just that one moment. >> how dare he ask for a birth certificate when people are still trying to figure out if he's from this planet? [laughter]
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chris: i think it's the new york media drives this guy. any other city he wouldn't get away with it. >> to me it's not even about chutzpah, which we're all mispronouncing by i the way. chris: do if right. >> i can't do it. it's the media focusing on things that donald trump focuses on as though that's relevant. the birth certificate or whatever. by the way, the constitution should be changed anyway. you shouldn't have to be born in america to run for president. but the fact that we focus on it is ridiculous. >> well, give -- don't give him any awards. many but charlie sheen's meltdown is one for the ages. come on. "winning" has become the best hash tag in history. charles: talk about chutzpah. when we come back, 2011 has
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been a great year for stagecraft. this is just fun. our annual sorry to say awards and also the cad of the year. that's a tough one, too.
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chris: welcome back to our 2011 awards show. next up, the stagecraft award. who had the best staging of the year? william and kate with this fabulous end to their wedding? >> look who's driving. the balloons are trailing. that is fantastic! chris: from the sublime to the ridiculous, our next nominee, new mexico's gary johnson, one of the original republicans run forg president. he got his turn in an early deebtd -- debate and here's the
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stage craft he came with. >> my next door neighbor's two dogs have created more shovel-ready jobs than this current president. chris: also this hillary clinton photo op in hawaii. catch the guy with naked ambition. [laughter] and the last stage craft nominee, the guy who was fully rehearsed for his big moment as rupert and james murderoch -- murdoch testified on the phone tapping scandal the >> both tried to stay bove the fray until the fray came to them in the form of a cream pie aimed at the face of the patriarch the chris: everybody plans this stuff. it's all p.a. -- >> i don't know that i saw it at the time, but secretary clinton's reaction -- >> that's the hillary clinton
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who should have run for office. >> and that was my thought. i wanted to give the award to hillary for handling is -- it so well. she's got a great belly laugh, it was totally authentic. chris: every year we hope we can skip the year -- prize for the year's biggest cad. there's an old-word name, cad. but the nominees for 2011 are, how could we recyst? dominique strauss kaun. the married man who had sex with a hote medical maid. arnold schwarzenegger who had sex with a housekeeper. and anthony winer, sending out those embarrassing cell phone pictures. herman cain with all the allegations about harassment,
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tommed op with the 13-year a -- affair. katty kay? >> i'm very glarksd kathleen, that there are no men up there. -- no women up there. >> it's men. >> it's -- it's got to be dominique strauss kaun for me. the alleges of what happened in the hotel room and everything that happened subsequently. future president of france, blew it all not just on one incident but the allegations that came out. >> it showed how he lived. >> i'm surprised the censure -- consequences of his actions had much broader reach but anthony winer to me was the biggest embarrassment, to himself, to any adult human being. >> my issue is with arnold. it's because it was the housekeeper. i go to something my wife said to me. when that housekeeper needed a day off, did she go to arnold
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or to maria? meaning, the idea that the housekeeper did this, also sort of this -- the double betrayal. the betrayal of the husband and of somebody that helped up raise your kids. and arnold lived in the same house with both. that, to me -- that's why i think maria just walked so fast. >> in this day and age, that he could keep it secret for so long -- i'm just amazed there are still multiyear long secrets of that nature. >> to quote a countryman of yours, samuel johnson, there is no -- no point not in discerning between a louse and a flea. they're all horrible. but arnold takes the cake to me. chris: right in front of everybody. why didn't she get another job? why didn't she leave? >> that's the thing. the double betrayal. chris: i don't get why she
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stayed there with the kid. when we come back -- obviously you're all right -- we look
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chris: welcome back to our annual awards show. it's quite a show. incredible comebacks this year. the nominees are congresswoman gabby giffords. seven months after the shooting
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she was voting on the house floor. and newt gingrich, he was wandering around on book tours and boorges he's got a shot at winning it all. and the broncos' hero tim tebow, who wasn't expected to be big in the pros but led his team to at least four come-from-behind wins. and whitey bulger, america's most wanted for 16 years when the f.b.i. nabbed him this year the rick? motley crew there. >> i'm going to give it to gabby giffords. we have an email q and a session with her in the issue. amazing story. >> that is a great story and we're also safe with tebow. but i want to put in a word for matt operater -- prater, please. >> serious broncos fan. >> 18 seconds to go and he
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kicks a field goal to create the tie-breaker, then kicks the winning field goal. come on, prater. chris: i do like the kickers, little skinny guys who can play in the pros. >> i'm doubling down on gaby. -- gabby. how do you not? it was -- it was a moment that actually brought the two parties together for a second. however, the newt gingrich comeback is unbelievable the >> even to get as far as he's gotten. he may not be the nominee and i still think he won't be -- >> the night is still young -- yeah. chris: ok, parker. >> how somebody can do so well, the tho that somebody could do so well with conservative republican voters who has so much non-conservative baggage is what makes this comeback high. >> that's a high level of
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anti-mormonism, anti-mitt. chris: the man used to say, a candidate like him can live off the land. as things proceed, moment to moment he will see opportunities and take them. >> he understands twitter. chris: we'll be right back. ok, you guys wanted a space for entertaining your friends,
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chris: welcome back, and thanks to a great round table, chuck todd, richard stengel, kathleen parker and katty kay. it's been a great year for us all. that's the show. merry christmas a
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The Chris Matthews Show
NBC December 19, 2011 12:00am-12:30am PST

News/Business. (2011) The 2011 Awards Show. New. (CC) (Stereo)

TOPIC FREQUENCY Newt Gingrich 5, Osama Bin 4, Herman Cain 4, America 3, At&t 3, Clinton 3, Perry 3, Arnold 3, Donald Trump 3, Syria 2, Libya 2, France 2, Gabby Giffords 2, Anthony Winer 2, Iraq 2, Katty Kay 2, Dominique Strauss Kaun 2, Charlie Sheen 2, Rick Perry 2, Chuck Todd 2
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